Boomer Esiason, Matt Light disagree on Odell Beckham Jr.-Patriots fit

The possibility of Odell Beckham Jr. joining the Patriots drew mixed reactions from Boomer Esiason and Matt Light on WEEI Monday morning.

Odell Beckham Jr. Patriots Browns
Odell Beckham Jr. (AP Photo/David Richard, File)
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The Odell Beckham Jr. saga will likely reach its resolution in the coming days as the star receiver hits the waiver wire on Monday following his release by the Cleveland Browns, and the Patriots might be players in the process.

Bill Belichick hasn’t said much about Beckham other than calling him “a talented player,” so it’s impossible to know if the Patriots would try to put a claim on him or scoop him up if he clears waivers.

But the topic already has people connected with the New England Patriots divided: should the team take a chance on the star receiver, or would they be better off leaving his mercurial personality to someone else?”


CBS analyst and former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason is more in the latter camp.

Esiason discussed the prospect of bringing Beckham into the fold on WEEI’s The Greg Hill Show on Monday and hinted the wideout’s temperament might not be good for first-year quarterback Mac Jones.

“You never really want to bring a guy like him into a locker room with a rookie quarterback,” Esiason said.

But the analyst and radio host also acknowledged the tenure of and respect commanded by Belichick and his coaching staff could offset Jones’s inexperience and relative lack of standing.

“[Beckham] would be a different player under Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels, there’s no question about that. He’s going to come here and behave. He wouldn’t be the distraction that he become in Cleveland, that he became in New York.”

Still, as Esiason noted, Beckham has appeared to be on his best behavior in the past only to bite his former teams.

“He behaved before the Giants gave him his big, new contract,” the analyst said. “Then literally three weeks into the season, he goes onto ESPN and trashes Eli Manning. This is something that has been in his history…when the young guys gravitate to a guy like that, sometimes it leads to a lot of negativity.”


Former Patriots guard Matt Light, who came on the show shortly after Esiason, didn’t entirely agree.

“I was on those teams where we brought in guys that, on the outside looking in, people said, ‘They’re never going to fit in. They’re not going to be able to do the Patriot Way…'” the Super Bowl Champion said. “The truth is most of them worked out pretty well. You don’t know until a guy gets there.”

More than that, though, Light suggested he doesn’t buy the idea that Beckham would adversely affect the Patriots’ locker room.

“I don’t recall ever worrying about the other guys in our locker room and what their attitude would do to us,” he said, suggesting the “Patriot Way” tends to keep players in check while they’re on the team. “People can walk into New England. They can be themselves. But they’re not going to be that public perception of themselves. That public perception is going to be of the team. I think it’s kind of crazy that one player is going to disrupt another player in a system like New England’s.”

The only question the Patriots need to answer, Light said, is whether or not Beckham can help them win football games.


“I don’t know the answer to that,” he added.

If Beckham clears waivers after Tuesday’s 4 p.m. deadline, the Patriots will have a chance to bid for him and find out.


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